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Lacey Snoke

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Ohio Department of Education Press Releases

$5 million awarded to Ohio libraries to expand learning opportunities for students

Release date: 12/15/2022

The Ohio Department of Education today awarded $5 million to libraries across the state to expand learning opportunities for students in prekindergarten-grade 12. Awardees will use the funding for programming that supports student learning, particularly in literacy, with the goal of accelerating learning for students who have been most impacted by the pandemic.

The Department is utilizing federal Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funds to further the strategies of Future Forward Ohio. The library funding is meant to complement other programs that are part of Future Forward Ohio, including the Summer Learning and Afterschool Opportunities grant, Regional Education Partnerships grant and Statewide Mathematics and Literacy Tutoring grant.

“Libraries can play a critical role in accelerating learning, including helping students read, providing hands-on learning opportunities and encouraging students to explore careers,” Interim Superintendent of Public Instruction Stephanie Siddens said. “This partnership will help create additional supports for students as they recover from the impact of the pandemic.”

"We are proud to partner with the Ohio Department of Education on this program. This funding will help Ohio's public libraries continue and expand the work they are already doing to help students overcome the learning loss," Executive Director of the Ohio Library Council Michelle Francis said. "We are grateful for these resources and know they will have a truly meaningful impact on libraries and their local communities."

Strategies awardees will use include tutoring, strengthening summer reading opportunities and providing community learning programs to students.

Additional information about the grant is available on the Department’s Libraries Accelerating Learning webpage.